Situating spatial ability development in the Craft and Technology curricula of Swedish compulsory education


  • Ting-Jun LIN KTH Royal Institute of Technology
  • Jeffrey Buckley Technological University of the Shannon, Midlands Midwest, Ireland
  • Lena Gumaelius KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden
  • Ernest Ampadu KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden


Technology education, spatial ability, document analysis, Swedish compulsory education


Spatial ability has been shown to have a causal relationship with students’ success in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects. While an abundance of research has investigated how spatial ability development is and could be integrated to science, engineering, and mathematics curricula, little attempt has been made to date to situate where spatial ability manifests in technology curricula. This paper uses document analysis strategy to examine the locations of spatial ability related learning outcomes within the craft and technology curricula in Swedish compulsory education.

This paper employs a qualitative inductive approach to analyse the policy document from the Swedish National Agency for Education. We argue that spatial ability development manifests in the Swedish craft and technology subject curricula along two dimensions. First, the curricula are underpinned by visual components, which are graphical, pictorial, and manufactured components. Second, along with the visual components, the curricula are delivered with the aim of constructing students’ conceptual and procedural knowledge. While technology curriculum dominantly cultivates students’ conceptual and procedural knowledge by interacting with the graphical and manufactured components such as sketches and objects, the craft curriculum is taught in a more diverse way where students are not only required to deal with graphical and manufactured components but also to involve in various pictorial components that convey cultural and historical meanings by craft products.


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How to Cite

LIN, T.-J., Buckley, J., Gumaelius, L., & Ampadu, E. (2023). Situating spatial ability development in the Craft and Technology curricula of Swedish compulsory education. The 40th International Pupils’ Attitudes Towards Technology Conference Proceedings 2023, 1(October). Retrieved from